Last Updated on February 5, 2023
Why does fondant taste bad? This question fills our inbox every week and the answer is quite simple. But, can you change this horrible flavor?
In this jam-packed article, we will look at exactly what fondant is. And, we will even look at the different types you can make or buy. This way, you can know exactly which options are tasty to use and which need some altering.
What is Fondant?
Fondant is one of the most used decorating ingredients when it comes to cake-making. This unique product is a thick moldable paste made from a combination of sugar and water. But, most recipes contain a lot more than just these two ingredients.
The paste can have varying consistencies which allow bakers to create virtually anything. Fondant can be used to cover cakes in a flawlessly smooth and uniform coating. Then, you can also use it to mold figurines and embellishments for garnishes or to portray a theme.
Fondant is essentially a type of edible clay. So, your creativity can come to life with this ingredient.
Very often, a thick syrup is added to help give the fondant a more pliable consistency. This syrup is usually glucose or corn syrup. These additives don't have a particular flavor other than being extremely sweet.
Another type of ingredient that is added is glycerine or gelatin. However, they are only added to fondant that is used for sculpting. This helps the fondant set in place as it dries.
Fondants can also be sold in different colors. Or, it can be colored at home with gel, liquid, or powdered coloring. Fondant isn't flavored with essences or extracts, but they can be.
Plain fondant either tastes like sugar or has a slight vanilla undertone (if the fondant has been flavored with vanilla).
Different Types of Fondant
There are two main categories of fondant. The first is poured fondant, which is a glaze-like ingredient. Then, you have rolled fondant, which is the thick pliable paste we mentioned above. Rolled fondant is far more popular than poured fondant, simply because of its versatility in uses.
Poured fondant is usually a very sweet mixture that tastes relatively good. The fondant people always complain about tasting bad is rolled fondant.
Now, within rolled fondant, there are also a few different types you can get.
Traditional Rolled Fondant
This type of fondant is the one that you buy in a store. You can make it at home, but you need special ingredients which aren't that easy to find. This fondant is mass-produced and sold at extremely low prices.
Traditional fondant is made with a combination of sugar, oil, corn syrup, glycerine, and stabilizing gums.
It can be used for rolling and sculpting, making it incredibly versatile. And, there are additives you can buy that will help it set quickly. This fondant dries very hard but is still sliceable. It is also set with a matt finish, not a glossy shiny one.
This fondant is easy to work with, can be easily colored and flavored, and is easy to store for a long time.
However, the products sold in this category aren't the same. You sometimes have to experiment with many different options before finding one that works for you. Plus, this fondant tastes bad. The worst of all the choices you have.
Marshmallow Rolled Fondant
This is the ultimate homemade fondant. Marshmallows are made from similar ingredients to traditional mass-produced fondants. So, you essentially don't have to source those hard-to-find ingredients.
The recipe for most marshmallow fondants consists of powdered sugar, melted marshmallows, water, and shortening.
This fondant is easy to make and provides you with convenience. It does taste a little bit better, but only because marshmallows are heavily sweetened and flavored with extracts.
Unfortunately, some marshmallow fondants still taste like plastic. And, this fondant doesn't have as long a shelf life as the commercial one.
Chocolate-Based Rolled Fondant
And finally, a chocolate-based fondant is the least common rolled fondant out there. This is because they are expensive to make, more difficult, and very perishable (in comparison to the other types).
But, they arguably taste the best because they are made from real chocolate. Especially if the chocolate is high in quality. But, don't expect an overwhelming chocolate flavor. This fondant is still made using most of the ingredients for traditional fondant.
Why Does Fondant Taste Bad?
The main reason that any type of fondant tastes bad is because of the addition of gelatin, stabilizing gums, or glycerin. And there is no beating around the bush, they just taste horrible. They have a very plastic-like flavor that is hard to hide.
After all, as many experts say, fondant is supposed to make a cake look good. It isn't there to taste good. That is also why you must have an incredibly tasty cake recipe.
My Fondant Taste Bad - How to Make it Taste Better
As we have said, fondant tastes bad and there aren't many ways you can fix that. The plastic flavor from gelatin and glycerin is extremely prominent. At the most, you can try to knead in some flavoring extract.
Extracts have the most concentrated flavor. So, the amount you add will likely not change the consistency of the fondant itself. Just make sure to buy a clear extract if you are making white fondant.
Then, you can also add vanilla beans. But, this ingredient will add black speckled throughout the icing. But, if that doesn't bother you, it will work well enough.
And finally, if you are making your fondant at home, try using flavorful ingredients. For example, use butter instead of shortening. Or use flavored sugar instead of regular powdered sugar.
These are all easy ways to try and hide some of the plastic and bland flavors. But, they will never completely get rid of it.
Best Brand of Fondant
Now that we've looked at different types of fondant, you may be wondering what the best brand of fondant is. There are many to choose from, but here are some of our top picks.
Wilton's Decorator Preferred Fondant is the obvious choice. Wilton has a huge selection of cake and cake decorating ingredients, and they're a well-trusted brand. You can buy their fondant in 6 colors and it costs around $8.99 for 24oz of fondant. It's worth noting that this fondant is made in a facility that processes: egg, milk, soy, and tree nuts.
This type of fondant comes in an incredible 40 different colors and is super easy to use. Their fondant is not only gluten-free but also Kosher and halal; this means that it's suitable for a range of dietary restrictions.
Renshaw is another well-loved brand, particularly in the UK. Their ready-to-roll fondant comes in 28 colors; ranging from pastel shades to bold shades. It also comes in different sizes so that you can make a simple cake with it or bulk-make cakes.
Good Tasting Fondant Recipe
To make the best-tasting fondant, you'll need the following ingredients:
- ¼ cup of whipping cream
- 1 ½ tablespoons of gelatin
- 1 ½ tablespoons of glycerin
- ½ teaspoon of meringue powder
- ½ cup of light corn syrup
- 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
- 5 cups of powdered sugar (and additional for kneading)
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- 3 tablespoons of butter
Now all you need to do is:
- Add the following ingredients to a bowl: powdered sugar, salt, and meringue powder. Mix well and leave to one side.
- In a separate microwave-safe bowl, add the whipping cream. Now add the gelatin and leave it to rest for a few minutes. Now add the bowl to the microwave and heat in 10-15 second intervals. Keep checking until dissolved. Be careful not to make it too hot.
- Add the following ingredients to the warm gelatin: vanilla, glycerin, and light corn syrup. Mix well and ensure it is not set. If the gelatin begins to set, place it back in the microwave for a few seconds.
- Add the bowl of liquid to your powdered sugar. Mix gradually and then knead in the butter with a stand mixer, or by hand. You should now have dough.
- Move your dough to a lightly floured surface and begin kneading. When it's not too dry or sticky, portion it into whatever size you need and place it in a plastic Ziploc bag, and seal it. Chill for at least a few hours.
- When you're ready to use the fondant, remove it from the fridge and allow it to come to room temperature. Add a small amount of shortening to your hands before kneading the fondant and adding it to your baked goods.
Wrapping It Up
So, as you can see, just because everyone says fondant tastes bad, doesn't mean that there aren't ways you can fix it. Or at the very least, make the flavor a little more tolerable.
If you have any other questions, let us know in the comments below. And, share this informative article with anyone who hates fondant as much as you do! They'll thank you and owe you one!
Why Does Fondant Taste Bad? 3 Types and Making Them Good
- Add the following ingredients to a bowl: powdered sugar, salt and meringue powder. Mix well and leave to one side.
- In a separate microwave safe bowl, add the whipping cream. Now add the gelatin and leave to rest for a few minutes. Now add the bowl to a microwave and heat in 10-15 second intervals. Keep checking until dissolved. Be careful not to make it too hot.
- Add the following ingredients to the warm gelatin: vanilla, glycerin and light corn syrup. Mix well and ensure it is not setting. If the gelatin begins to set, place back in the microwave for a few seconds.
- Add the bowl of liquid to your powdered sugar. Mix gradually and then knead in the butter with a stand mixer, or by hand. You should now have a dough.
- Move your dough to a lightly floured surface and begin kneading. When it's not too dry or sticky, portion into whatever size you need and place in a plastic Ziploc bag and seal. Chill for at least a few hours.
- When you're ready to use the fondant, remove from fridge and allow it to come to room temperature. Add a small amount of shortening to your hands before kneading the fondant and adding to your baked goods.
Is fondant supposed to taste good?
Fondant doesn't taste good. And unfortunately, there is very little you can do about it. Most fondant options taste bad because they contain gelatin or glycerin. And, without these ingredients, most recipes won't work. So as we have said, there isn't much you can change about it.
Is fondant supposed to be eaten?
Fondant is eaten but because so many people don't like the flavor, it doesn't have to be. You can scrape it off and leave it aside. Fondants' sole purpose is to make cakes look fun, interesting, and unique. Not to make them tasty.
How do you make store-bought fondant taste better?
Your best bet is to add some flavoring extracts or vanilla beans. Even flavoring powders will work well. But, don't expect these ingredients to completely take away the plastic flavor. It is quite prominent and won't disappear easily.
Does Wilton fondant taste good?
Wilton fondant is still a type of traditional fondant that contains gelatin and glycerin (which gives it a plastic taste). But, they do add some flavorings which make it a little better than fondant from other brands. Wilton fondant has a slight nutty flavor.
Does marshmallow fondant taste better than regular fondant?
Marshmallow fondant does taste better than regular fondant. This is because the marshmallows have already been flavored with extracts. So, when they are melted into a fondant mixture, they relay those flavors too.
Lindy Van Schalkwyk is a culinary specialist with a background in Advanced Cooking, Advanced Pâtisserie, Media Communications and Nutrition. She has gained invaluable experience in the culinary industry having worked in some of the top restaurants in Africa in 2016 and 2017. Her expertise in nutrition has enabled her to develop recipes for special dietary needs. In 2018, Lindy began working in the Food Media industry, focusing on recipe development, recipe writing, food writing and food styling.